Are you selfless? I’m not talking about being a person who readily helps others. That’s part of it, sure. But a truly selfless disciple has forsaken everything for the love and mission of Jesus. When we are selfless, we no longer think of ourselves. We think of Jesus, and we think of how we might reflect Him to others. Society does everything it can to convince you life is all about you. You deserve to have nice things, a nice place to live, a good job, and a sense of safety; you deserve to be comfortable.
Except you don’t. As I’ve said before, what you (and me) deserve is to spend eternity separated from our Creator. We spend the bulk of our days in abject rebellion to our professed “Lord”. We deserve nothing good. But our selfishness convinces us it’s not true. We listen to society and live selfish instead of selfless lives.
As long as we are attached to the things of this world, we can never know what it means to give God the worship He deserves. Jesus said we cannot serve two masters (Matthew 6:24). We will hate the one and love the other. Therefore, if we love the things of this world (money, possessions, prestige, entertainment, etc.), it follows we hate Jesus. Strong words, yes, but words spoken by Jesus Himself. We can’t live our lives with a foot in both camps. We are either for Jesus or against Him (Matthew 12:30). He gave us no other options.
Letting go of material things and relationships is painful, but without sacrifice there can be no redemption. If redemption could be achieved without sacrifice Jesus would not have had to die. The fact is, if we are to find God’s ideal for our lives, it’s going to require some sacrifice on our part. But really, what sacrifice? We give up all we can’t keep for all we can. We give up the temporal for the eternal. Our so-called sacrifice is really no sacrifice at all!
We can have confidence that abandoning ourselves to Him will result in our benefit (Matthew 16:25). He promised to never leave us or forsake us (Deuteronomy 31:6). He is a strong anchor in the storms of life (Hebrews 6:17-19). What we perceive as our strength is really weakness for we have no power to add a single day to our lives (Luke 12:23-34). Everything we believe we can control is merely an illusion. Every ability we possess is due to God’s blessing. It is merely a part of Himself which He chose to bestow on us. We are nothing without Him (John 15:5).
Being selfless is required for discipleship. Being selfish is the antithesis of being a disciple. We cannot enter Heaven in our selfishness. We must renounce it all and humbly bow before Him. Your life is either going to be all about Him or all about you. He gave us the choice by imparting freewill to each of us. Real life, eternal life, exists only when we give it up for Him. If you want to know who God is, you must forget who you are. You must find yourself anew in Him. You must be selfless.